New Book Casts Spotlight on Traditional Foods

Thursday, August 21 2014

Courtesy of APIA

Food has been a crucial part of the Unangan culture for centuries.

But in the Aleutian and Pribilof islands, people are relying less on the land and sea and more on their local store.

KUCB’s Lauren Rosenthal reports on a new effort to promote subsistence living -- in print.

City Planners to Meet, Approve New Lots

Thursday, August 21 2014

Unalaska’s planning department will move forward with a couple of subdivisions on Ounalashka Corporation land today.

Planning staff are set to approve two new lots for OC in a public hearing today at 2 p.m. It’s part of a process called platting, where landowners have to plan utilities and rights of way for each new lot they creates.

One of OC's planned new lots is on Airport Beach Road near the Little Coffee Hut. The other is in the Margaret Bay subdivision. In both areas, OC already owns the land and wants to draw new lot lines within it.

Coast Guard Medevacs Fisherman Near Chuginadak

Wednesday, August 20 2014

The Coast Guard medevacked an injured fisherman from near the Islands of the Four Mountains in the central Aleutians Wednesday.

The 27-year-old man was aboard the fishing vessel Patricia Lee at the time. The boat was near Chuginadak Island, home of Cleveland Volcano, when the man hurt his foot and needed medical attention.

Coast Guard public affairs officer Diana Honings says the cutter Alex Haley was nearby, with an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter aboard.

Unalaskans Split from State on Oil Tax Repeal

Wednesday, August 20 2014

Three hundred and thirty-one people voted at Unalaska City Hall on Tuesday. (Annie Ropeik/KUCB)

The fight to repeal the state’s oil tax structure brought Unalaskans to the polls during Tuesday's primary -- but as of Wednesday, it looks like the system may be here to stay.

The ‘no’ side, which supports keeping the current tax breaks system, was up by about 7,000 votes Wednesday morning. Nearly 20,000 absentee and early ballots still have to be counted.

Plenty of Unalaskans were hoping things would turn out differently.

Golden King Crab Fishery Kicks Off

Tuesday, August 19 2014

Golden king crab season is officially open in the Aleutian Islands.

About five vessels had signed up to participate as of the season’s start last Friday. More than six million pounds of golden king crab is available to catch.

That amount is set in federal regulations and divided up among the fleet and community development quota groups.

Melissa Good is a biologist with the Department of Fish & Game. She says three boats are fishing for goldens in the Eastern Aleutians, and two boats in the Western Aleutians. The fleet uses deep-water, longline pots that they can leave to soak for long periods.

Polls Open for Primary Election

Tuesday, August 19 2014

Unalaskans can vote in the primary today at City Hall. (Annie Ropeik/KUCB)

Update, 5 p.m. Tuesday:  Voters turnout has been slow but steady today. As of just before 5 p.m., about 170 people had voted in Unalaska.

Year-round residents and visiting workers alike came out to cast their ballots.

Many said the biggest issue on the ballot for them was the controversial referendum to repeal the state’s tax structure for oil companies.

Third Westward Employee Charged in Air Pollution Case

Monday, August 18 2014

Federal attorneys have filed more charges as they continue an investigation into Clean Air Act violations at the Westward Seafoods plant in Unalaska.

Between 2009 and 2011, James Hampton was the engineer in charge of Westward's powerhouse. That includes a water injection system for reducing potentially harmful emissions of nitrogen dioxide. 

Prosecutors say that pollution equipment was mostly turned off on Hampton's watch. And now, Hampton is facing a felony charge for giving false data to his environmental compliance manager to make it look like the pollution system was up and running.

Interior Dept. Doubles Down on Izembek Road

Friday, August 15 2014

Over the past eight months, the village of King Cove has waged a constant campaign to get a road built through the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge -- even suing officials in the Interior Department.

Interior has been mostly silent on the issue until now.

Industry Groups Throw Weight Behind Oil Tax

Friday, August 15 2014

Knik Construction has posted similar "'No' on One" campaign signs at worksites around the Southwest. (Annie Ropeik/KUCB)

In just a few days, Alaskan voters will decide whether to repeal the state’s oil tax system. It’s question one on Tuesday’s primary ballot.

Unalaskans will see plenty of familiar names among the groups that want to keep the current policy, which tries to spur development by cutting taxes for oil producers.

The list includes Knik Construction, which has been paving Unalaska’s roads this summer. They’ve got “Vote ‘No’ on One” signs up on their asphalt plant in Unalaska and at project sites all over the Southwest. And their parent company, Anchorage-based Lynden Construction, has given almost $84,000 to the well-funded “Vote ‘No’” campaign, according to state records.

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